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Fort Collins Weather Station
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Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere

NEWS: At this time, access to the CIRA Foothills Campus has been curtailed. CIRA personnel are continuing their research via telework and can be contacted directly via email or voicemail

For questions relating to physical access to the CIRA campus, please contact Erin Carleton via email at

For all other questions please contact Holli Knutson at 970-491-8209 or via email at

For the latest updates about COVID-19, visit Engineering-specific information for students can be found on the Current Students page

GOES 16/17 Daily Loop

Current Events

The CoRP Science Symposium is postponed until late Summer – early Autumn 2022.  Due to logistical difficulties implementing some of the objectives of the meeting – namely to facilitate the building of community between NESDIS CSCs and CIs, it was decided to delay the meeting to allow the face-to-face interaction that is so important to build relationships.

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Our Mission

The Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (CIRA) serves as a nexus for multi-disciplinary cooperation between NOAA research scientists and Colorado State University research staff, faculty, and students, aligning NOAA-identified research theme areas with long-standing academic strengths of the University.

Our mission is: to foster additional collaboration with national and international agencies who are developing related capabilities; to affect the fundamental research conducted at the University towards NOAA’s operational needs; and to communicate our research and its practical implications to the scientific community and the public.

To this end, we are dedicated to: providing high-quality training to ensure operational user proficiency; conducting outreach programs to K-12 education and the general public to promote environmental literacy; and to quantifying and communicating the significant positive societal impacts of NOAA research on our everyday lives.

Our Technology

With NOAA and CSU support CIRA has operated a Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) Earth Station since 1980. Today our collection capability handles multiple simultaneous GOES transmissions, NOAA polar data, Himawari-8 and European MSG. CIRA also plays an important role in each new GOES satellite as one of the primary test sites for initial transmissions and sensor verification.

CIRA operates a high-technology infrastructure to support research in our major theme areas. The infrastructure contains over 300 workstations/servers, a satellite Earth Station with an online archive, several high-performance modelling clusters, and a high-speed network. With its expertise in data fusion, CIRA is developing systems and tools that will simplify the acquisition and manipulation of satellite and model data for scientific research.